Red Balloon red-faced after paying $43,200 penalties under new excessive payment surcharge laws

Red Balloon red-faced after paying $43,200 penalties under new excessive payment surcharge laws

Does your business charge an excessive amount on card payments?

We previously mentioned that your daily coffee may be cheaper now that laws against excessive payment surcharges have been introduced to apply to both small and large businesses.

In brief, the laws provided that businesses may only charge customers a surcharge of what it costs them to process a payment.

The ACCC has taken action under the laws, issuing four infringement notices to ‘experience’ provider Red Balloon Pty Ltd (Red Balloon) for breach of the excessive payment surcharge laws in respect to payments made by MasterCard and Visa credit and debit by customers.  The excessive payment surcharge laws have applied to large businesses, such as Red Balloon, since 1 September 2016 and all other businesses since 1 September 2017.  Red Balloon has paid penalties of $43,200.00 and has since lowered its payment surcharges.

The ACCC has also sent out more than 350 letters to small businesses, reminding them to ensure compliance with the new laws.

We note that payment of a penalty specified in an infringement notice is not an admission of a contravention of the Act and that the ACCC may issue such notice where it has reasonable grounds to believe that a person has contravened provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act.

If you need advice regarding your compliance with the Competition and Consumer Act, do not hesitate to contact me at  or call me at 1300 033 934 for a no-obligation quote.

Source: ACCC